If I die tonight, I'd go with no regrets
If it's in your arms, I'd know that I was blessed
And if your eyes are the last thing that I see
Then I'd know the beauty heaven holds for me.

One morning at 6:00 am I was jolted out of a sound slumber by my 1 1/2 year old son yelling "Oh no! Buggy! Oh no! Oh no!" from the kitchen. I run out to find he had climbed OUT of the crib, holding "BEAR", sucking his thumb with a determined look on his face. He was saving the family, stomping the floor that was 1/2 covered in squished ants and frantically running ants. "Oh no! Buggy! Oh no!" STOMP, STOMP, STOMP!

But if I make it through, if I live to see the day
If I'm with you, I'd know just what to say
The truth be told, you take my breath away
Every minute, every hour, every day.

It was a warm spring day filled with the scent of lilacs and freshly cut grass. I lay belly down in the grass with all three of my kids (at ages 3, 4, and 6) fanned out around some anthills. We put out separate lids filled with different things waiting to see which foods the ants liked best. They intently watched the ants while I watched their curiosity shine. I'm glad I didn't just answer my eldest's question, "What do ants like to eat?" but instead showed him how to find out by experimenting for himself.

'Cause every moment we share together
Is even better than the moment before
If every day was as good as today was
Then I can't wait 'till tomorrow comes.

Another bright breezy summer morning as I was bringing a load of freshly washed clothes out to hang on the line, I noticed my youngest (at 3 yrs) looking up at me motionless from inside a washing machine cardboard box surrounded by crumpled up newspaper. A shaft of light caressed the right side of his face. A soft breeze gently touseled his blond curls. Though, it was more like he was looking through me. He said,"I am garbage", with a serious straight "garbage" face on. " You are NOT garbage! Who told you that?"I was worried. He looks at me now and smiles, "No, mama, LOOK". He puts his "garbage" face back on and his eyes glaze over with that faraway look again. "I AM garbage!". I realized at that moment he had been bitten by the acting bug. I discovered his passion. It lit him afire.

A moment in time is all that's given you and me
Moments in time, yet it's something you should seize
So I won't make the mistake of letting go
Every day you're here I'm gonna let you know.

Christmas Eve day this year, we grabbed our cell phone and ,spur of the moment, decided to climb the mountain behind us. On the way up we grabbed some ripe cattails, as many as we could carry. It took a couple of hours, but we made it to the top by 3:00pm. At exactly that time, the phone rang. My family called from their Christmas Eve celebration in cold snowy Connecticut, while we were atop a Southern California mountain on a warm sunny afternoon. As we talked with everyone, we opened up the cattails and created a blizzard on the mountain. The kids (now adolescents) and dog chased the "snow" with glee as we celebrated our first Christmas away from family over a cell phone. Cattail seeds on your tongue don't melt, but it was the next best thing.

That every moment we share together
Is even better than the moment before
If every day was as good as today was
Then I can't wait 'till tomorrow comes.

written by: Steve Mac/Wayne Hector
sung by Westlife on their debut album (NOT the US debut album)
(Rockstone Music/Rondor Music (London) Ltd.)

They happen in their own rhythm. Not random, no, but with a strange, supernatural cadence that defies our understanding. Like the digits of pi, or the mysterious roaring of the waves breaking against the plane of the beach-sands.

Maybe you're reading a story, a poem, listening to a song, a symphony, a babbling brook, or the whistling of the wind. Sometimes it's morning, sometimes afternoon, sometimes the dead of night. Warm, cold; wet, dry; bright, dark; loud, quiet. It just happens.

Hold on as long as you can.

Some little part inside your head just clicks. And then you see it. Like magic, only real and unmistakably natural. The world slipped to the side, just a tiny bit, and you can see the man behind the curtain, only it's not a man, and there really isn't a curtain either.

It takes different forms each time, but it rings crystal-clear: you just saw the world as it's really supposed to be. Maybe it's seeing it all as one, maybe it's seeing the one as all. Maybe it's seeing up as down, or left as right, or front as back. But those are just the easy ones. The hard ones comes later.

This lightning always strikes twice.

And you'll never forget its thunder. For days, weeks, months, even years, you'll hunt, ceaselessly trying to recapture it. The quiet times in your day will be taken with probing into those dark crevasses of your mind with the sonar of the soul, dredging up everything, anything that could bring you back to what you caught between eye-blinks.

You won't find it.

Eventually, you'll give it up, file it off into that corner of your mind reserved for the bygones and the pipe dreams, between meeting aliens and learning to fly. Let someone else throw his life away chasing after the music of those ephemeral spheres. You'll go back to your normal life, a little disappointed, but that's just how it goes, sometimes.

You'll learn to stop expecting the unexpected, to quit jumping out screaming from around every corner, trying to catch the world unawares and sneak into enlightenment by the brute force of constant wishing.

It will find you, again.

Then you'll know it; you're not crazy--after all, there's nothing crazy about marching to the right drummer, even if no one else can hear him. Something is there--it's strange; it's unnerving--and it's good. After this, you'll never be able to turn back.

That's okay. The new world is better than the old, after all.

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